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In a recent meeting about a loss insured by a major U.S. carrier, an adjuster told me that a mechanics lien had been placed on the insured by one of the vendors involved in the post-loss restoration work. This, the adjuster said, was something he had never witnessed in his more than 30 years of claim handling. The adjuster attributed the vendor’s startling action to the current state of the economy.

Even if one does not fully comprehend the complexities and causes of the current financial crisis, the enormity of the crisis and its impact on confidence in the economy is not lost on anyone. Credit and liquidity issues are placing additional pressures on business owners. The worsening economy compounds these pressures, as well as the downgraded sales forecasts, increasing costs of raw materials, and energy prices. Consequently, this results in reduced margins. If we add to this a catastrophic event that interrupts business, then the problems a business can face is multiplied.

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